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6 month old not interested in food - help

(8 Posts)
BMag Thu 07-Nov-19 16:51:51

Hi everyone,

I’m having a really stressful time trying to introduce food to my 6mo daughter. If anyone has had a similar experience it’d be good to hear it because I’m feeling like the worlds crappest mum at the moment.

It all started in a bit of a rushed fashion - I went to the clinic at our Sure Start centre to get her weighed a few weeks ago, and one of the health visitors was shocked when I told her we hadn’t started introducing food yet. She was 26 weeks at that point but still hadn’t turned 6 calendar months old. HV says that the 6 month guideline isn’t actually 6 months, it’s 24 weeks, and to throw as much food at her as possible straight away because they get picky with what they eat after 28 weeks. Cue me and her dad panic buying things from the co-op we thought she’d be ok eating (weetabix, avocado etc).

Because she’d shown no sign of wanting food (she hadn’t tried to grab ours or even shown much of an interest when we ate), the baby led approach I had been planning to use didn’t really work. I switched to blending veggies together for her and trying her out with a bit of ready brek in the mornings (always with a bit of water as a drink), and after 2 / 3 weeks of this approach she’s still showing hardly any interest. The most I’ve ever managed to give her is 2 baby spoons of ready brek and 1.5 spoons of pea and green bean purée.

She kicks off after one tiny mouthful and turns her head away like she’s full. I’ve tried feeding her after bottles, in between bottles, before bottles, after naps, everything - she is never interested.

I’ve reached the end of my tether with it today. I tried to give her a bit of purée when she was happy and post-nap, she kicked off and cried so I gave up after half a spoon thinking she wasn’t hungry, then she continued to cry until I realised she was actually hungry and made her a bottle, despite having fed her fairly recently.

The only success I’ve had is with water - she loves drinking from the sippy cup, so much so that I have to take it off her so she doesn’t have too much of it at once, which makes her scream.

I just feel like I’m completely failing at this. She’s starting nursery at the beginning of December and I’m so happy that someone else is going to be responsible for trying to get her to eat. I feel awful for looking forward to fobbing it off onto someone else but the stress of it all is just too much. She was born premature and was difficult to feed at the beginning, and this is just bringing all the worry and stress back up again, even though she’s perfectly happy and healthy so I know I’m just being ridiculous. HV said her prematurity shouldn’t increase the time we need to wait to start introducing food to her (she was only 5 weeks early so not too bad).

If anyone has any experience of trying to get an uninterested baby to eat food I’d be really grateful to hear your story!

OP’s posts: |
Kittypillar Thu 07-Nov-19 21:21:58

Please don't feel like you're failing! You really aren't! Also, what a crock of shite your HV has come out with hmm honestly, where do they get it from... NHS officially advice is "around 6 months" and what's most important is looking for signs that they are ready, e.g. lost the tongue-thrust reflux, able to hold their head steady, stay in a seated position etc. For some babies, this can mean just before 6 months, for some babies it can mean a bit after. Either is okay.

From my own experience, we started weaning DD when she had just turned 6 months. For the first month or so, she wasn't even remotely fussed and didn't actually eat much at all. We figured that what was most important was giving her little tastes of different things and flavours, so she'd have tiny bits here and there. She absolutely wasn't having a proper meal of any sort until she was at least 7 months old, and even longer for her having 3 meals a day (think she was 8 months then!). She's now about to turn 18 months and she eats most things happily. Not a fussy eater at all, even though she was very slow to get into the swing of things with food.

I was worried, like you are, and someone told me that really "food before 1 is just for fun" and I do think there's an element of truth to that. Obviously main nutrition will still come from milk and right now it's about introducing her to new flavours and textures. It's so hard when you're worried but honestly, just try to enjoy it and have fun with it! Don't put any pressure on her, explore as many new things as you can together, don't give up if she absolutely seems to hate something first time round (took my DD 4 attempts to eat peas and now she can't get enough of them!)... It won't happen overnight but it will all come together soon, I promise smile

Kittypillar Thu 07-Nov-19 21:23:20

P.s. Sorry for the typos, I meant tongue-thrust reflex for a start. Maybe I need to go to bed... grin

RiggedUpSquare Thu 07-Nov-19 22:33:17

The advice you've been told is not per any official NHS guidelines I've ever known. A quick check on the official online guidance confirmed it. As a previous poster said, you really need to go by signs from around 6 months e.g. the tongue thrust reflex.. see www.nhs.uk/start4life/weaning/ready-or-not/

Have you tried lots of milky stuff e.g mashed pots. Porridge. Blended shredded wheat etc

Poppinjay Thu 07-Nov-19 22:43:55

My DD1 did this. She jsut wouldn't open her mouth for food. I suddenly realised it was a ridiculous exercise and she just clearly wasn't ready for weaning yet.

Much to my HV's disgust, I listened to my insincts and stopped trying. I left if four weeks and tried again. She ate happily straight away and never looked back.

If I were you, I'd ignore the HV and take a break. Try again in a few weeks, when you feel she's more ready.

Hohofortherobbers Thu 07-Nov-19 22:48:35

Food before 1 is just for fun. Give her the tiny teaspoon she will take of puree 3 times a day with a bit of finger food to play with and give it no more attention than that, her bottles are giving her nutrition still. Great that she will hold a sippy cup, won't be long before her milk is in that

LeGrandBleu Fri 08-Nov-19 02:40:57

What about soups? InFrance we even give soup in a bottle and just use scissors to make the teat slightly bigger. Or soups in a bowl at first very runny and then with more chunks, a bit of Parmesan cheese and later even some rice or pasta

BMag Sat 09-Nov-19 14:54:29

Hi everyone, thanks for all your messages 😊 it’s reassuring to hear that other people haven’t heard of the wean-before-28-weeks advice before, I was hoping it was just more of the usual bollocks some HVs tend to come out with!

I’m definitely trying to embrace the ‘food before 1 is for fun’ mentality - still can’t convince her that it’s fun but I am feeling more calm about it at least, thanks to your comments and DD distracting me by doing some new stuff this week (proper laughing and almost sitting up unaided). I think she might still be doing the tongue thrust reflex thing too, so might still be too early to expect much.

@Kittypillar and @Poppinjay, great to hear your LOs are well and enjoying their food 😊 I’m doing a mixture of exploring tastes and slightly easing off, so I’m not trying more than once or twice a day with her and when I do I’m trying to give her new stuff. Hopefully we’ll find an approach that suits us both soon 🤞

Thanks again everyone 😊

OP’s posts: |

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